The madness will begin today. The British & Irish Lions will arrive a few hours after the All Blacks have unveiled a new jersey design and a tour that has been 12 years in the making will leave its first footprint in history.
A cast of thousands will greet the Lions at Auckland Airport and then pile into the city centre to hear coach Warren Gatland and a handful of players speak at a press function later in the evening. Meaning will be found in what is said. More meaning to be guessed at by what is not said and this is how it will be for the next six weeks.
But that initial engagement could reveal plenty about what sort of mindset the Lions have brought and what sort of image they want to project. The last time they were here in 2005, they kicked off their tour with what ultimately transpired to be one of their best performances.
It was massively over the top, yet hugely entertaining. The fingerprints of Tony Blair's former spin doctor, Alistair Campbell, were all over the stage management of that first day.
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There was a soundtrack - upbeat, powerful, Elgar-esque almost, pumped through an expensive sound system to create a sense of theatre that proved way beyond anything the Lions managed on the field. Players were introduced, American-sports-style, their names announced as they entered the room.
This was the new age Lions. All slick production values and big brand polish. Whatever they had been on previous tours, Sir Clive Woodward was reinventing the 2005 version as half rugby team, half stage show. It was apparent he and Campbell wanted socks blown off on day one and for there to be no ambiguity about the enormity of the Lions' vision of themselves.
As everyone knows, such hubris was ill-advised as the only genuinely enormous things about the 2005 Lions were the size of their tour party and the magnitude of their failure.
Gatland, more attuned to the understated nature of the Lions' history and the need for substance to ultimately triumph over style, is expected to set an entirely different tone.
There's unlikely to be any glitz or pomp. There won't be any spin doctor influence or contrived messages. Just good old Gats telling it like it is in the hope that he's setting the right tone - that he's reflecting the values of his team and their desire to give their most compelling performances on the field rather than off it.
What, in essence, he'll be hoping, is that the 2017 Lions project delivers not only a little of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales, but just a little bit of Waikato, too.
Pragmatic, stoic, sensible and genuine - everything the Lions weren't in 2005.